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New York
Islanders
26-47-9
Toronto
Maple Leafs
34-35-13

game recap

Maple Leafs 3, Islanders 2, OT

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:51 AM

Associated Press

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Maple Leafs 3, Islanders 2, OT
New York Islanders 2, Toronto Maple Leafs 3

TORONTO (AP) -Mikhail Grabovski had not scored in 17 games, and had never netted a goal in overtime.

None of that deterred Toronto Maple Leafs coach Ron Wilson from putting him on the ice with the game on the line.

Grabovski scored 50 seconds into overtime to give the Maple Leafs a 3-2 victory over the New York Islanders on Tuesday night. It was his first goal since Jan. 29.

"The coach had faith in me and gave me a chance to play in overtime," Grabovski said. "It's my first career goal in overtime, so I'm pretty happy.

"Before, I had games with lots of chances but I couldn't score. My hands, maybe. But the coach believed in me and he kept me in there."

The Islanders blew a chance to clear the puck from their zone and, after two teammates had whacks at the puck, Grabovski fired the puck in from the middle of the zone for his 14th goal. The shot beat goalie Joey MacDonald, who was out of position after making a save.

"The way things have been going for him, I could see that puck bouncing and a swing and a miss," Wilson said. "Fortunately, he got his stick on it.

"Even during the game, there were a few times where I didn't know where he was (on the bench). He was so worried about scoring, but he got a bounce tonight. He was in the right spot and got the job done."

Lee Stempniak and Alexei Ponikarovsky also scored for the Leafs.

Kyle Okposo and Blake Comeau scored for New York, which had won four of five. The Islanders moved within three points of Tampa Bay as they try to move out of last place in the NHL standings.

"I look at it as two seasons," Islanders coach Scott Gordon said. "The first half was obviously very frustrating in that we lost our No. 1 goaltender (Rick DiPietro) and ... all the other injuries. The second half has been a breath of fresh air. Our guys have responded and what we hoped would happen in the first half is now happening in the second half.

"The compete level from all the individuals has been tremendous. As a result, we've become a hard team to play against. Any coach will tell you that, when you can walk away from a game saying his team is a hard team to play against, it's a satisfying feeling."

Stempniak beat MacDonald with a low wrist shot from the middle of New York's zone to open the scoring with his 12th goal at 17:27 of the first.

Okposo tied it by whacking in a bouncing puck in front of goalie Martin Gerber for his 15th of the season at 17:42. Comeau gave the Islanders a 2-1 lead when he fired in a long shot for his seventh goal at 18:27.

The Islanders, 6-23-3 on the road, were unable to add to their lead in the first half of the second period despite having manpower advantages for five minutes as a result of three consecutive Toronto penalties.

"We had some great possession and time in the offensive zone, but we just didn't convert the chances we had," Gordon said.

Ponikarovsky tied it 2-2 with his 19th goal at 8:46 when he knocked down an Islanders clearing attempt and rifled a shot into a top corner.

The Isles had a 30-26 shots edge through 60 minutes. The Leafs got off the only two shots on goal in overtime.

Notes: The announced attendance was 19,041, the second-smallest Maple Leafs home crowd this season. ... Toronto G Vesa Toskala underwent season-ending surgery to repair a labrum tear in his hip. D Mike Van Ryn tore the medial collateral ligament in his left knee Saturday, and D Jonas Frogren sprained a knee ligament in the same 4-1 loss against Edmonton. Both players are out for the season. ... D Brendan Witt returned to the Islanders lineup after serving a five-game suspension for a hit to the head of Maple Leafs RW Niklas Hagman, who is still sidelined.

scoring summary
1st Period
17:27
TOR
Lee Stempniak (12) ASST: Jeff Finger (12), Jason Blake (30)
1 - 0 TOR
17:42
NYI
Kyle Okposo (15) ASST: Sean Bergenheim (8), Frans Nielsen (19)
1 - 1 Tie
18:27
NYI
Blake Comeau (7) ASST: Josh Bailey (17), Mike Iggulden (4)
2 - 1 NYI
2nd Period
NONE
3rd Period
08:46
TOR
Alexei Ponikarovsky (19) ASST: NONE
2 - 2 Tie
OT Period
00:50
TOR
Mikhail Grabovski (14) ASST: Alexei Ponikarovsky (25), Anton Stralman (9)
3 - 2 TOR
penalty summary
1st Period
06:54
NYI
Tim Jackman  Fighting (maj) against  Phil Oreskovic
06:54
TOR
Phil Oreskovic  Fighting (maj) against  Tim Jackman
19:23
NYI
Tim Jackman  Hooking against  Alexei Ponikarovsky
2nd Period
05:26
TOR
Anton Stralman  Tripping against  Kyle Okposo
07:01
TOR
Ian White  Tripping against  Kyle Okposo
08:32
TOR
Pavel Kubina  Holding against  Kyle Okposo
16:25
TOR
Mikhail Grabovski  Hi-sticking against  Frans Nielsen
19:56
TOR
Jason Blake  Interference against  Mike Iggulden
3rd Period
05:33
TOR
Lee Stempniak  Fighting (maj) against  Bruno Gervais
05:33
NYI
Bruno Gervais  Fighting (maj) against  Lee Stempniak
05:33
NYI
Bruno Gervais  Roughing against  Lee Stempniak
OT Period
NONE
goalie stats
Joey MacDonald
SA: 28TOI: 60:03
Saves: 25EV: 20 - 23
PIM: 0PP: 3 - 3
SV%: .893SH: 2 - 2
Martin Gerber
SA: 30TOI: 60:50
Saves: 28EV: 16 - 18
PIM: 0PP: 11 - 11
SV%: .933SH: 1 - 1